Visit a small city that captures the imagination with striking-looking architecture, ancient religious buildings and the creative output of talented Mexican artisans.
San Miguel de Allende has cobbled streets, gardens, leafy courtyards and Spanish colonial architecture. The city was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008. Its star attraction is the compact historic center with centuries-old buildings. Wander through ancient streets, visit beautiful old churches, browse shops for artisanal goods and tap into the thriving art scene.
Start your visit in El Jardin, the central plaza where many residents sit quietly or socialize. On its south side is the Parish Church of San Miguel Arcangel, a stunning building with neo-Gothic towers. Elsewhere around the square are old colonial buildings and a branch of La Esquina Mexican Folk Toy Museum. Peruse the small collection of handcrafted traditional toys, some of which are available for purchase. Head to the museum's main premises to see the full collection, which has been amassed over a period of over 50 years.
San Miguel is widely known for its artisans and artists. See some of their best works in the galleries and studios of Fabrica La Aurora. This former textile factory has been transformed into a vast art and design center, about a 15-minute walk from the center of town.
Extend your sightseeing to attractions just outside the city. They include El Charco del Ingenio, a botanical garden of Mexican plants, and the Sanctuary of Atotonilco. This is an 18th-century religious complex decorated with vivid frescoes and murals. Travel 7 miles (11 kilometers) from San Miguel to enjoy the indoor and outdoor thermal pools of Escondido Place.
Find more ways to relax when you are a back in San Miguel. Enjoy a stroll and picnic in the green environs of Juarez Park.
Reach San Miguel de Allende by flying into Benito Juárez International Airport in Mexico City, 170 miles (274 kilometers) away or Guanajuato International Airport, 58 miles (94 kilometers) away. Complete your journey from either airport by bus or rental car to enjoy the city’s architecture, culture, history and green spaces.